‘I become rich buisnessman.’


There is one kid at Samatol, who we had regular contact with during our stay. His circumstances are interesting. He used to live and work with his aunt, but he soon became fed up because he wanted to pursue an education. So he ran away. In Mumbai, Samatol found him and now he has been there for almost a year. Over this time however, he has lost his passion for learning.

The kid is creative. He knows a bit of english and can speak hindi & marathi fluently. He is also hyperactive. The kid is constantly stealing our phones, playing games on our laptops, or making silly jokes. I must say, it is little amusing. One time when he was on the computer, he went to a website for a nearby mall. He pointed out the game centers and cool shops. Then on my iphone 5 he will look for every game possible and play it. Later on youtube he will sing along to his favorite song, Tum hi ho, and watch every movie trailer under the earth. Then repeat.

If my 15 year old cousin was to do something similar, I  wouldn’t think much of it. In fact. it would be weird if he didn’t. But his situation concerned me a little more. Most of things he wants, he wont be able to obtain in life without an education, and he doesn’t realize this. He says he is gonna become ‘rich businessman’ and doesn’t need school for that.

A week and a half later, he stole a thousand rupees and went to that mall. Blowing the amount after a week he came back. Thereafter, I didn’t leave my phone out and kept my laptop away. Not because I am afraid he will steal it, but wanted to prevent him from polluting his mind. It probably will not have much affect. I also tried explaining to him how those things, ‘in theory’, are not worth chasing after and how important education is.

In the UK we have a similar problems. Kids lose interest for learning and are adamant that they will become rich automatically. I think many kids go through this phase, difference is, UK children are made to attend school, where they are constantly told the importance of education. Constantly exposed to the idea that education means success or money. Worst comes to worst there are plenty of opportunities after school to pursue vocational and practical skills training so they can be productive somehow. In Bharat, I have been told there is not a great system to catch kids when they fall or ensuring they stay in school. Comparatively they have less places for vocational and practical skill development.

Whilst excess materialism is never good, ‘artha’ is still needed in quantities for the development of society and man. At the moment it is difficult for poverty stricken children to even have a chance at this if they do not know the importance of education.








How to save runaways


I will tell you now, I was really looking forward to experiencing the fieldwork from before YFS. This process involves finding boys on the railway platforms and then trying to return them safely back home. The thought of patrolling platforms and searching for kids seemed awesome. In my mind, I imagined these kids to be in the dark corners of the station, casually injecting heroin, drinking and threatening you with knives and guns. I built the work up to be dangerous and action packed. And it was. Continue reading “How to save runaways”

Acceptance and Samatol’s Vision

First impressions really do stick in your mind and my first impression of Mumbai was ‘how unclean!’. There is so much rubbish,noise pollution,air pollution and so much congestion. It also always rains and this makes the streets even messier. It shocked me to
know that there are parts of Bharat which is worse and for quite a number of days, this really upset me. Especially when you saw people littering in front of you or spitting in the street. Another bad habit. Continue reading “Acceptance and Samatol’s Vision”

Post Mahashibir and Preparation

About a week ago there were so many thoughts rushing through my mind.  I felt there were too many aspects of my life where there was work that needed to be done or something to prepare for. I was aware that most of these things were conjured up due to my own high expectations but knowing that piece of information did not really help me. I will spare you all the details, but amid these thoughts, there was of course YFS. Continue reading “Post Mahashibir and Preparation”

Longings, Development and Thoughts

Three weeks from now I will be making my second trip to India as part of the YFS initiative. YFS (Youth for Sewa) is an internship program which takes on those of age 18-25. Then sends them to work on various sewa projects around India. The one I will be working on, is in the outskirts of Mumbai working for a charity which seeks to stop young children, who run away from home, being exploited by dangerous people. This blog essentially highlights my reasons for embarking on YFS and my general thoughts before going. Continue reading “Longings, Development and Thoughts”